Let’s face it. If you live in America, you are rich. Sure, there are exceptions like those who can’t afford food or shelter, but generally speaking, if you compare yourself to others around the world, you are filthy rich. American Christians are among the wealthiest believers to have ever lived!
There’s nothing wrong with being rich, but to whom much is given, much is required. And God has some very specific things to say to rich Christians.
In 1 Timothy 6:17-19, Paul tells Timothy to give rich Christians an admonition.
“As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. They are to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share, thus storing up treasure for themselves as a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is truly life.” (1 Timothy 6:17-19 ESV)
So let’s take a look at 10 things God wants rich Christians to do:
1. Don’t Be Haughty
“As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty,”
Haughtiness is defined by Merriam Webster as blatantly and disdainfully proud. It essentially points to a stereotypical rich snob, who feels they have more self worth than others because they have more net worth than others.
Paul says, don’t be proud because you have cash!
2. Don’t Put Your Hope in Money
“nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches,”
It’s funny how we feel more comfortable and at ease when our bank account is full, and much less comfortable when our bank account is empty.
Those are natural feelings, but where do they come from? Many times it’s because money is our idol and we put our hope and trust in our cash instead of the Sovereign Creator of all things.
3. Put Your Trust in God
“but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy.”
God is the One who promises to take care of His children. Everything we have ever earned, received, or worked for is a direct gift from Him.
He is the One we look to for our hope, faith, and trust – not wealth.
4. Enjoy Your Money
“who richly provides us with everything to enjoy.”
God created us to glorify and worship Him by enjoying Him forever. We enjoy Him by enjoying the things He has given us.
If you eat a great, perfectly seasoned and grilled steak, and you thank Him for giving you the taste buds to enjoy the flavors – that is worship!
God gives us money to enjoy as well. Use it to glorify Him by enjoying what He’s given you, and always remember Him as the source!
5. Do Good
“They are to do good…”
Use your money for good things, like helping others and giving to the poor. Dont’ just spend lavishly on yourself.
6. Be Wealthy With Good Works
“…to be rich in good works,”
Instead of constantly trying to dream of ways to build wealth with your business or work, dream about how to build wealth in terms of your good works towards others.
7. Be Generous
“…to be generous,”
Generosity should be the mark of every Christian, especially rich Christians. After all, Christ gave up all the riches of heaven to become poor so that we (through his life, death, and resurrection) might become eternally rich!
8. Be Ready to Share
“…and ready to share,”
You become ready to share by getting rid of generosity killers like debt, greed, pride and busyness!
9. Store Up Treasure in Heaven
“thus storing up treasure for themselves as a good foundation for the future,”
What does it mean to store up treasure in heaven? Back in those days, Jews would’ve understood treasure in heaven to mean deeds of mercy and deeds of kindness to those in need.
We build great wealth in heaven by eagerly helping the poor, needy, and distressed of this world.
10. Hold Firmly to True Life
“take hold of that which is truly life.”
True and lasting life is an eternity spent with your heavenly Father who loves you and sent His Son to die for you.
Jesus lived the perfect life that you and I never could to make atonement for sins we have committed.
He died a gruesome and horrendous death on a cross – one that you and I deserved to die. And yet, He laid his life down willingly. For the joy that was set before Him, he endured the beatings. He scorned the shame of a Roman cross – for you. He went to that hill to die and all the while He whispered that He loves you.
That is what we cling to, not our wealth. Not our money-making plans, or our business ventures. Those things aren’t wrong, but they aren’t true life! Look to Him. Look to Jesus – He is the source of True Life!
Photo by Sinderella